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Are we able to be cursed if we don't tithe?

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Tithe: The Hebrew word, "ma’aser," is translated both as “tenth part,” and “tithe.”  In like manner the Greek word, "dekate", is translated “tenth,” and “tithe.” The tithe is “The 10th part of one’s increase, which God claims as His.  I believe the word "tithe" is simply to give the 10th part of one's increase straight to God. 

And all the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land or of the fruit of the tree, is the Lord’s. It is holy to the Lord.  If a man wants at all to redeem any of his tithes, he shall add one-fifth to it.  And concerning the tithe of the herd or the flock, of whatever passes under the rod, the tenth one shall be holy to the Lord (Leviticus 27:30-32, NKJV).

Tithes were given to God as part of appeasement for sin along with other offerings so we could be in right standing with Him. These offerings included Burnt offerings, Grain Offerings, Peace Offerings, Great Offerings, Harvest Offerings, Sin Offerings, Heave Offerings, tithes and other sacrifices. In Numbers 18:21-22 and later in Hebrews 7:5 the High Priests were commanded to receive tithes in the form of a heave offering from the people.  This was in the form of food.  God allowed them His portion of the tithe as their service to the Temple. Many dictionaries claim the word "tithe" is "a one-tenth part of something paid as a contribution to a religious organisation. This is the standard belief amongst many people also and is taken from this passage in the Scriptures. Many teach today that we are to tithe (give a tenth) by offering the first portion (in alignment with the sacrificial firstborns) of our wages to our local churches, in the belief that if we don't, we will receive a curse instead of a blessing. Malachi 3 is a teaching used by many for this.  I believe this is incorrect teaching because this passage was written to the people of Israel who were very much backslidden from the Lord, having neglected Him in every way.

God required offerings, tithes and other sacrifices in the Old Testament so we could be in 'right standing' with Him. These offerings were all about appeasement. Jesus did away with all these ceremonial laws when He stood in the gap for us at the Cross of Calvary.  This selfless act enables us to be in right standing with God.  We no longer have to appease Him. No more sacrifices, offerings and tithes in this ceremonial way are needed. If part of the offerings and tithes that were given to God for appeasement were passed on to the High Priests for their service then that surely can no longer apply as the practice of ceremonial tithing, offerings and sacrifices given to God in this way are null and void. There is still however a spiritual element of tithing required from us as followers of Christ which I will discuss further along.   

“So all these curses shall come on you and pursue you and overtake you until you are destroyed, because you would not obey the Lord your God by keeping His commandments and His statutes which He commanded you.  They shall become a sign and a wonder on you and your descendants forever (Deuteronomy 28:45-46, NKJV). 

titheAccording to this Scripture curses can still affect us today. The key word used here is forever. They can affect the flesh of man.  The flesh is the soul (mind, will, conscience and emotions) and the physical body. The heart of man is sometimes referred to as the seat of the soul, but for all intents and purposes the heart of man is simply the soul. The Bible claims the heart of man is wicked. Man is a tripartite being.  We have three parts: spirit, soul and physical body. The spirit of man is untouchable once you have accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour.  This is the gift of Grace given to us by God - which is 'Eternal Salvation'. The flesh of man however is untouched and remains carnal immediately after being born-again and requires a walk of trust with God to be renewed.  God lovingly piece by piece cleanses, heals and makes new. Even though the flesh of man is not made new immediately nothing can separate us from the Love of God, or eternal salvation unless we ourselves willingly walk away and reject all Christ has done for us.

A year or so ago God told me to read Malachi.  After I had done this He told me that I was under that curse. The story of Malachi is about the Jews being cursed by God because they had not tithed or given offerings correctly.  Instead of offering God the first fruits of their flocks they offered up blind, stolen, crippled and sick animals.  He showed them that if they bought all the tithes and offerings into the storehouse there would be enough food in His temple, and He would lift the curse. At the time I repented on behalf of my ancestors for these defiled sacrifices incase their sinful acts had brought a curse upon my family line, as I believed that was why God had brought it to my attention. I had never believed in tithing 10% to churches, but I had always given offerings. I then assumed it was done and I was no longer under this curse. God later gave me a new revelation on tithing and showed me that I was still under this curse!

Scripture tells us that we are no longer bound to the curse of the law in Galatians 3:13, as Jesus became a curse for us.  The curse of the law is the penalty for not keeping the Law.  It is the punishment system for sin. How awesome is that - we can no longer be punished by God for sin!  The Old Covenant was all about trying to earn favour with God through keeping the law.  The New Covenant is all about Love, and the fact that we already have favour from God.  Jesus earned this for us because of His selfless act. We are no longer bound to the penalty system. The Old Covenant is obselete in the sense that nothing we can do in the way of works enables us be in right standing with God or earn our salvation. The Old Covenant system was about earning our salvation through works of righteousness by keeping the law. The New Covenant is about us already being righteousness, inheriting salvation and being right standing with God by believing and accepting Jesus into our lives. The love of God is the basis of the new Covenant and it is based on faith. Faith in the belief of Jesus and His work on the cross.

What does this mean though for the Moral Law of God?  The Moral Law tells us RIGHT AND WRONG regarding conduct and character.  Right and wrong is defined only by God.  The law of God which prescribes the moral or social duties, and prohibits the violation of them. The Law of God is His character.  The very essence of Who He is.  God doesn't change. The Ten Commandments and various other commands given to Moses and the Prophets cover what God views as RIGHT and WRONG. The Law of God however is still in effect. Do we then make void (not valid or legally binding) the law through faith? Certainly not! On the contrary, we establish (set up on a permanent basis) the law (Romans 3:31, NKJV). The Law was never removed, only the penalties. The law of God is written on our hearts and in our minds. For if that first covenant had been faultless, then no place would have been sought for a second.  Because finding fault with them, He says: “Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah— not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they did not continue in My covenant, and I disregarded them, says the Lord.  For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws in their mind and write them on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people (Hebrews 8:7-10, NKJV). The Law of God is in our minds and written on our hearts. This is His Moral Law.  As Christians God requires us to abide by His Moral Law. The Old Covenant was about the Laws and the resulting penalties.  The New Covenant is about Love and the freedom of the knowledge of your salvation.

Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind'. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets" (Matthew 22:37-40, NKJV).  We see by the above Scripture that the whole law and the laws spoken by the prophets are all covered by abiding by these two commands which are all about love.  Loving God, loving others and loving ourselves.  We need to endeavour to keep these two commands otherwise we can become inflicted within our flesh.  Why do we still get inflicted within our flesh when God took away the punishment system for our sins?  Although the punishment system is gone there is still a natural law of consequences in place, even for born-again Christians.  The Bible tells us that God disciplines those whom He loves.  It would be ludicrous to think we could walk contrary to the law of God which is written in our hearts and in our minds and not be disciplined in anyway.  Like any good father God wants to teach us right from wrong.  The awesome thing is He has sent His Holy Spirit to help us.  The important thing to note is that although we may mess up and be disciplined and get afflicted in our flesh we do not lose our salvation.

How do we love the Lord our God with all our hearts, all our souls, and all our minds?   By giving Him our 'lovetime, trust and obedience'! He showed me that tithing to Him isn't about giving a 10th of your wages to your local church, it is about giving to Him directly. Jesus Christ gave us His life. We are in return asked to lay down our lives.  We are to die to self. Our increase is the new life Jesus has given us. Our life is no longer our own. God desires more than anything to have a personal relationship with us. How do we give God 10% of this increase.  Easy we give Him all of us!  We give Him our lives.  Our life for His life. What He requires first and foremost is You! Offering to God only bits of you does not work for God, He requires all of You! At the Cross of Calvary an exchange takes place.  His life for your life.  It is a swap. Many of us hang on to and protect areas and in turn don't give Jesus access to them. This poses a problem. These unyielded areas we are hanging on to remain unsanctified.  They remain in the hands of the devil - cursed, demonised, broken and unhealed.  Anything unyielded isn't covered by the Blood of Christ because it hasn't passed through the Cross. We may need repentance, deliverance and healing in those areas before we can let them go and accept Christ into them.  Many times we think we have given them to Christ, but He sees our heart and knows we haven't.

One of these areas is your time.  It is not so much about the amount of time, it is about putting Him first in that time. He showed me that like the Jews in Malachi I was giving Him my time, but not the first fruits. This enabled satan to afflict my flesh. I would only spend time with God when I had the time.  I had a terrible habit of going to bed extremely late and getting up late. My husband and I would set our alarm for the latest time possible to get the children off to school then I would muck around getting organised which left me no time for God.  I needed to prioritise my time better. God asked me to go to bed earlier and get up earlier so I would be ready on time and have time for just Him and me. Our priorities may not be God’s priorities. It can be undisciplined living, and undisciplined living puts one to sleep spiritually. It is a condition in which the heart of man has not been fully awakened.  We need to make a conscious decision to make God’s will and calling for our lives our first priority. This means prayer, praise, relationship with God and loving Him with all our heart, speaking in tongues and Bible meditation.  For some, it may even need to be first thing in the morning before starting your day. This can be what putting God first means.  It may be a literal thing. In my case not allocating special time for God caused me to be forever distracted and a procrastinator.  I really struggled to organise and prioritise my life.  My days were chaotic which left me always feeling flustered and un-relaxed. We need to prioritise our lives for God. Spiritually feeding ourselves should also be a big priority.  We can spend so much time feeding our souls with things of the world that our spirits get weak.  Our spirits need to be fed with the things of God. Excessive food intake as well as feeding ourselves with the things of the World and lack of spiritual food (Word of God) can make our spirits weak.

Another thing I wasn't giving God was my trust.  Trust was a very hard thing for me to yield to Him.  When we cannot trust we are not worshipping in Spirit and truth. Worshipping in Spirit and truth is total submission to God with all of your heart and trust - trusting God always no matter what the circumstances or trials are telling us. We need to remain steadfast in Him without doubt believing that 'all things work together for good'. When we cannot worship Him correctly, this is 'false worship' and results in a counterfeit veil being placed over our hearts. A counterfeit veil represents a spirit of stupor otherwise known as a slumbering spirit and blocks our spiritual discernment. This also blinds true understanding of God and His word, and can even prevent us from receiving from God. If this counterfeit veil is with us true spiritual awareness and understanding may not happen immediately when we are born-again.  It can be a process. The slumbering spirit works hand in hand with the deaf and dumb spirit, and allows deception to enter. 

According as it is written, God hath given them the spirit of slumber, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear; unto this day (Romans 11:8, KJV).

"But their minds were blinded. For until this day the same veil remains unlifted in the reading of the Old Testament, because the veil is taken away in Christ. But even to this day, when Moses is read, a veil lies on their heart. Nevertheless when one turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty" (2 Corinthians 3:14-17, NKJV). 

The third thing I was lacking in my relationship of giving to God was my unconditional love.  I was only actively showing God I loved Him when I was 'actively' receiving from Him.  When I didn't receive answers to prayer I was hurt and annoyed and struggled to worship Him with my true heart. This clearly did not work for God.  At the end of a 3 year trial of receiving what felt to me like broken promises over and over again God revealed to me that He was testing my heart.  He was testing to see if I  loved Him for Him, or whether I loved Him for what I could receive from Him. I was shattered when I found out that He had to test my heart in the first place, that I had superficial love for Him in there. It really broke me that it had to even be tested.  However I passed the test! God revealed that my love for Him was greater than my love for receiving from Him. He then showed me that the curse over my life was barrenness and that was the reason I had not been receiving any answers to prayers. I passed the test and could now start receiving as I had proven to God that I loved Him unconditionally!

Throughout this God showed me that tithing is required for today.  Tithing is, and always has been about giving our increase to God. Curses can still result and affect our flesh when we don't abide by them. All commands given by God are to benefit us.  When we abide by His Godly principles, always our lives will turn out for the better. Tithing is not about giving 10% of our first-fruit (our wages) to our local churches.  It is about giving our first-fruit straight to God Himself in the form of love, time, trust and relationship.  It is also about giving Him our entire lives. This does not mean however that God doesn't want us to bless others. But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work. As it is written:  'He has dispersed abroad, He has given to the poor; His righteousness endures forever'. Now may He who supplies seed to the sower, and bread for food, supply and multiply the seed you have sown and increase the fruits of your righteousness, while you are enriched in everything for all liberality, which causes thanksgiving through us to God. For the administration of this service not only supplies the needs of the saints, but also is abounding through many thanksgivings to God, while, through the proof of this ministry, they glorify God for the obedience of your confession to the Gospel of Christ, and for your liberal sharing with them and all men, and by their prayer for you, who long for you because of the exceeding grace of God in you. Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift! (2 Corinthians 9:6-15, NKJV). These Scriptures tell us that we should be giving with a willing heart, not because guilt or misinterpretation of the law dictates to us.  We need to ask the Holy Spirit in our lives: "What does He want us to give"?  It may be money to the church you attend, (which is important because a church needs to function), a charity, family or neighbours?  It may even be a loving caring act towards our fellow brother or sister?  There are many other ways we can put God first in our lives. By actively outworking our purpose in Him whether that be in Ministry, in Helps, teaching, evangalising, and the many other things we are called to do -  all these things can be another way we can show God we are putting Him first in our lives. The Bible teaches us about giving with a willing heart; let us abide by this principle.  Don't give out of guilt or pressure; give because you want to give.  When we give with a willing heart then we will be blessed!

Repentance Prayer for Tithing:

"Father God I repent for failing to give You back Your share of my increase. I repent for all deception I believed in regard to tithing.  I repent for tithing to religious organisations because I believed it was my duty and had to do this. Help me to give with a willing heart and help me to bless those whom You want to be blessed. Show me how to give and what it is You want me to give. I trust You with my possessions and finances and I have faith that blessings will return to me when I bless others with a willing heart. I repent for all areas in my life that I have not yeilded to You. I want to relinquish all to You, so that You are in control. Father God I declare that I am ready to submit to You. Please help me to do this. All areas of myself that I have hung on to and not allowed to pass through the Cross I ask You to help me carry them through. I give You authority to minister to me. I love You and I trust You. I dedicate my life, spirit, soul and body to You. I dedicate my family, home, business, finances, belongings and pets to You. I ask for all thoughts, emotions, influence and endeavours I have to come into alignment with Your will and purposes for me. I commit my works to You LORD, so Your thoughts will be established. I ask the Holy Spirit for a fresh infilling to help me to discern Your voice, to lead me and guide me into the life You have planned for me. I give you authority to conform me into the Christ-like creation You have predestined me to be. Cleanse me, deliver me, sanctify me, heal me and make me a new creation in Christ. I give You my life for the life of Christ. Please show me all areas in my life that I have not fully yielded to You - Amen.
I break every curse that came as a result of incorrect tithing and command every demon that is with me because of this to leave in Jesus name". 

By Tania Francis         (See also "Counterfeit veil)